AIR Spotlight - Jal Jeevan Mission

AIR Spotlight is an insightful program featured daily on the All India Radio Newsonair. In this program, many eminent panellists discuss issues of importance which can be quite helpful in the IAS exam preparation. In this article, the discussion is the Jal Jeevan Mission.


India accounts for 18% of the world’s population and about 4% of the world’s water resources. Against this backdrop, this article analyzes the government’s Jal Jeevan Mission.

Jal Jeevan Mission

  • Pradhan Mantri Shri Narendra Modi announced the Jal Jeevan Mission to provide tap water to all rural households in the country by 2024.
  • The Jal Jeevan Mission was established with the goal of improving people’s quality of life and well-being. There have been many outages due to the lockdown and the Covid19 pandemic, but the mission went well with speed, scope, and purposeful focus. 
  • There were approximately 19.12 million households and of these only 3.23 million had tap water, which represents less than 17% of all households. But today, around 7.87 million households out of about 41.2 million households have tap water.
  • Not only households but schools, anganwadis, and public toilets will also receive water and so far more than 67% of schools have access to tap water, more than 60.9% of anganwadis, and more than 68.8% of primary healthcare centres (PHC) and gram health centres are powered by tap water. 
  • To monitor rural drinking water supply systems in villages, the Jal Shakti Ministry decided to go digital to use sensor-based IoT (Internet of Things) devices to effectively monitor the Jal  Jeevan mission execution in more than six lakh villages.

Other Government Initiatives 

 Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABHY)

  • Atal Bhujal scheme is related to groundwater usage and conservation in India.
  • Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABHY) is a central sector program of Rs 6,000 crore for the sustainable management of groundwater with community participation. 
  • It designs people participation through the formation of water user associations, water budgeting, preparation and implementation of Gram Panchayat-wise water security plans, and more. 
  • It is carried out by the Ministry of Jal Shakti (formerly known as the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development, and Ganges Renewal).

Know more about the Atal Bhujal Yojana in the linked article.

Catch the Rain

  • National Water Mission (NWM), Jal Shakti Ministry in collaboration with Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS), Ministry of Youth and Sports launched the awareness campaign “Catch the Rain”. 
  • It involves encouraging all stakeholders to create climate-adapted Rainwater Harvesting Facilities (RWHS) and underground layers to store rainwater. 
  • The campaign is carried out by engaging people from the grassroots through effective information, education, and communication (IEC) campaigns and activities.

SAUNI Yojana

  • Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation Yojana (Sauni Yojana) was started to redirect excess Narmada floodwater allotted to the Saurashtra region. 
  • Excess floodwater from Narmada will be distributed to 115 reservoirs in 11 districts of Saurashtra through a four-link pipeline with a total length of 1,126 km, benefiting 10,22,589 acres. 
  • Unlike traditional irrigation projects, SAUNI is technically a “link” project where water will be filled in irrigation dams already equipped with a network of canals. This network of canals will then allow water to be delivered to the farms.

Way forward 

  • Community involvement is required whether in water conservation, groundwater treatment, or operation and maintenance. Since the primary focus of Jal Jeevan mission is the community, therefore, without the participation of the community, the goal cannot be achieved. 
  • In the past, all programs were primarily engineering-based programs, so much of the focus was on the creation of irrigation engineering infrastructure. But this time, the focus is on providing services, not building infrastructure. 
  • Service delivery has its own challenges such as providing adequate water, maintaining streams, etc. Therefore, all these aspects must be taken into account.

Read more Gist of AIR Spotlight here.

AIR Spotlight – Jal Jeevan Mission:- Download PDF Here

Related Links
Council of Scientific and Industrial Research Atmanirbhar Bharat
Karbi Anglong Agreement
Jal Shakti Ministry India’s Water Crisis – Every Drop Counts: RSTV



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